The Goddesses

Deity of the Day for July 14th is Hecate, Goddess Of Witchcraft

Deity of the Day

Hecate

Goddess of Witchcraft

 

Hecate (or Hekate) is the Goddess of Witchcraft and of Justice. She is also a Goddess of the Underworld, Secrets and Wisdom. Hers is the power of knowing. She is often seen as a dark force, but she is a protector of women and those who seek justice. Her justice is like that of the hounds that accompany her: simple, direct, swift and uncompromising.

This Goddess’ quest for pure justice, combined with her witchcraft and secret knowledge, can be seen as harsh by many modern cultures. As a result, this type of justice is sometimes seen by many people as vengeance. However, she is not interested in simple vengeance; justice is a much in raising up the just as it is in bringing down the unjust.

The Goddess is most often seen depicted with dogs. There is some debate about the meaning of this, but it is thought to be either a symbol of birth or of death. She is a Goddess of both. She is the Goddess of the Crossroads – not only in this world, but between this world and the next. Although most often associated with dogs, she is also associated with frogs, horses, serpents, cows and owls. In her three-headed form, she is often depicted with one or more animal heads.

This goddess is also associated with medicinal and poisonous plants, and the arts of using them. These plants include aconite (aka monkshood and wolfsbane), belladonna (aka nightshade) , dittany, and mandrake. Yew, Cyprus and garlic are also sacred to this Goddess. Yew in particular was used in Ancient Greek death rites and during sacrifices to the goddess.

Hecate in the Ancient World

This is one of the most confusing Goddesses in the Greek Pantheon. Depending on the region and historical period that one looks at, she is a virgin goddess, a crone, a young woman, a three-bodied Goddess, or a being with three different heads. She is associated with magic, witches, ghosts, crossroads, childbirth, nurturing the young, gates, walls, doorways, lunar lore, torches and dogs.

This Goddess’ origins are as varied as her purpose. In some cases she was a Titan, in others, a child of Olympians. Most who study such things believe that she was the patron Goddess of a smaller culture that was conquered or absorbed by the Greeks. This is demonstrated in the way this Goddess was incorporated into major myths of the time.

Her Roman name, Trivia, means “Three (Tri) Ways (Via)”, and has little to nothing to do with the modern English word “trivia”. Small statues of her were placed at crossroads and at the entrances to private homes and cities. Statutes at crossroads often depicted her Triple Goddess, while those at entrances were usually of a woman carrying two torches.

Final Note

The worship of Hecate often leads to difficult choices that are not often accepted by society. She is a Goddess of rebirth, and those who she chooses become stronger and more comfortable with themselves and their own choices. Many people first come to her seeking some form of vengeance, but learn that justice and their own strength is more important.

 

Source:

Author: Psychic Wolf

Website: Pagan Growth

 

 

 

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WOTC Extra – Honoring and Invoking Deities

Book & Candle Comments

 

 Honoring and Invoking Deities

 

How can you get a god or goddess on your side? Many witches believe that divine assistance is always available to you and that the deities gladly offer their guidance, help, and energy to humans to use for positive purposes. Some view divine beings as higher aspects of human consciousness, which can be accessed and activated through magickal means.

 

If you aren’t used to considering a divine being as a partner in your spiritual favorite god or goddess for assistance and practical pursuits, you may wonder how to go about petitioning your favorite god or goddess for assistance. Here are a few suggestions:

 

Make an offering of some sort to the deity. Burning incense is a popular offering, although you may wish to choose an offering that more specifically corresponds to the nature of the deity whose help you seek.

 

Place a figurine of the chosen deity on your altar and focus your attention on it.

 

Use an oracle, such as tarot cards or runes, to access Divine Wisdom and open your mind to messages from the deities.

 

Pray.

 

Meditate.

 

Light a candle in honor of the deity you wish to petition.

 

Design and perform a ritual to the deity.

 

Write your request on a slip of paper, then burn it.

 

Choose a crystal or gemstone that relates to the deity. Carry the stone in your pocket and touch it periodically.

 

Plant herbs or flowers in honor of the god or goddess. Choose plants that correspond to the deity’s nature and your intent, such as roses for love or mint for prosperity

 Source:

The Everything Wicca and Witchcraft Book: Rituals, spells, and sacred objects for everyday magick

Skye Alexander

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Let’s Talk Witch – How do Gods and Goddesses Reveal themselves?

Witchy Comments

How Do Gods and Goddesses Reveal Themselves?

The answer depends on the person asking the question. If you tend to be a visual person, you might see a vision that you associate with a particular god or goddess. Isis, for instance, might send an image of winged arms or appear as a great bird. If your auditory sense is strong, you may hear a deity speak to you. Brigid might invite you to stir her cauldron or Yemaya’s song might penetrate your dreams. Apollo may make his presence known via the scent of bay leaf, one of his sacred plants. Suffice it to say that the Divine knows how to connect with each person through a medium that he or she will understand.

 

Frequently, deities communicate with humans through dreams. While sleeping, you’re more receptive to symbols and signs than you are in your ordinary waking state. Gods and goddesses may slip you messages while you’re meditating, too. Perhaps you may receive insights while you’re engaged in mundane tasks, such as putting on makeup or washing dishes—when your mind is only partly focused on the familiar activity, allowing room for spiritual discourse to take place.

 

Pay attention to signs. To American Indians, the appearance of an animal or bird may be a signal from a divine being who has assumed the creature’s form in order to convey information. Listen to your intuition, too—hunches can be messages from a higher source.

 

Source:

The Everything Wicca and Witchcraft Book: Rituals, spells, and sacred objects for everyday magick (Everything®)

Skye Alexander

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A Dianic Creation Myth

Goddess Comments & Graphics
  

A DIANIC CREATION MYTH

In the infinite moment before all time the Goddess arose from chaos and gave birth to Herself.

This was before anything else had been born… not even Herself. And when She separated the skies from the waters She danced upon them.

As She danced, so did Her ecstasy increase. In Her ecstasy She created everything that is.

Her movements made the wind and the element Air was born and did breathe. And the Goddess named Herself: Arianrhod, Cardea, Astarte

And sparks were struck from Her dancing feet so that She shone forth as the Sun, and the stars were caught in Her hair. Comets raced about Her, and the element Fire was born. And the Goddess named Herself: Sunna, Vesta, Pele’

About her feet swirled the waters in tidal wave and river, and flowing stream. The element Water did move. And She named Herself: Binah, Mari Morgaine, Lakshmi

And She sought to rest her feet from their dance, and She brought forth the Earth so that the shores were Her footstool, the fertile lands Her womb, the mountains Her full breasts, and Her streaming hair the growing things. And the Goddess named Herself: Cerridwen, Demeter, the Corn Mother

She saw that which was and is and will be, born of Her sacred dance and cosmic delight, and infinite joy.

She laughed, and the Goddess created Woman in Her own image, to be the Priestess of the Great Mother.

From Her Elements; Earth, Air, Fire and Water, the Goddess created for Herself a Consort- for love, pleasure, companionship and sharing.

The Goddess then spoke to Her daughters, saying: “I am the Moon to light your path and to speak to your rhythms.

I am the Dancer and the Dance. I whirl without motion.

I am the Sun who gives you warmth in which to stretch and grow. I am All that will Be.

I am the Wind to blow at your call and the sparkling Waters that offer joy. I am the Fire of the Dance of Life, and I am the Earth beneath your dancing feet.

I give to all my priestesses three aspects that are Mine:

I am Artemis, the Maiden of the Animals, the Virgin of the Hunt. I am Isis, the Great Mother. I am Ngame, the Ancient One who winds the shroud.

I shall be called a million names.

Call unto me, daughters, and know that I am Nemesis.” We are Virgins, Mothers, Old Ones- All.

We offer our created energy: to the Spirit of Women Past, to the Spirit of Women yet to Come, to Woman Spirit Present and Growing. Behold, we move forward together.

 

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.WOTC Extra – Invoking the Goddess

WOTC Extra – Invoking the Goddess

At the New Moon and Full Moon rituals, usually only the Goddess is invoke. This is because the lunar celebrations are primarily her domain. You can also call the God if you want – there is no rule against it – but most Practitioners don’t.

When you invoke the God and Goddess, light a candle for each. Use white or silver for the Goddess, yellow or gold for the God – or you can use white for both.

Some of the New Moons and Full Moons already have specific invocations included that mention the issues you will be working on during that ritual. For the rest, here are two examples.

New Moon Goddess Invocation #1

* Great Goddess, Lady of the Dark Moon, hear us! We your children

gather here in sacred space and call your name: Isis, Astarte, Diana,

Hecate, Demeter, Kali, Inanna! Hear our words. Know our hearts. Be

with us in our circle. So mote it be.

* Great Goddess, Lady of the Dark Moon, we thank you for your

presence in our circle and in our lives. May you continue to guide

and strengthen us in the days to come. So mote it be.

__________________________________________________________-

New Moon Goddess Invocation #2

* Beloved Lady, we call to you to join us tonight as we meet in

sacred space. We gather in your name and ask you to help us in our

craft. Guide us to work with wisdom and with love. Welcome and

blessed be.

* Beloved Lady, you have shared with us your wisdom and your

love. We thank you for these, and all the gifts that you have given

us. Stay if you will, go if you must, in perfect love and perfect

trust. So mote it be.

Source:

Circle, Coven, & Grove: A Year of Magickal Practice

Deborah Blake.

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Let’s Talk Witch – Attuning With The Gods

Witchy Comments & Graphics

Let’s Talk Witch – Attuning With The Gods

 

Of old, the God was the Sky Father, and the Goddess, the Earth Mother. The God of the sky, of rain and lightning, descended upon and united with the Goddess, spreading seed upon the land, celebrating Her fertility.

Today the deities of Wicca are still firmly associated with fertility, but every aspect of human existence can be linked with the Goddess and God. They can be called upon to help us sort through the vicissitudes of our existences and bring joy into our often spiritually-bereft lives.

This doesn’t mean that when problems occur we should leave them in the hands of the Goddess. This is a stalling maneuver, an avoidance of dealing with the bumps on the road of life. However, as Wiccans we can call on the Goddess and God to clear our minds and to help us help ourselves. Magic is an excellent means of accomplishing this. After attuning with the Goddess and God, Wiccans ask Their assistance during the magical rite that usually follows.

Beyond this, the Goddess and God can help us change our lives. Because the Deities are the creative forces of the universe (not just symbols), we can call upon Them to empower our rites and to bless our magic. Again, this is in direct opposition to most religions. The power is in the hands of every practitioner, not specialized priests or priestesses who perform these feats for the masses. This is what makes Wicca a truly satisfying way of life. We have direct links with the Deities. No intermediaries are needed; no priests or confessors or shamans. We are the shamans.

To develop a rapport with the Goddess and God, a necessity for those who desire to practice Wicca, you might wish to follow these simple rituals.

At night, stand or sit facing the Moon, if it is visible. If not, imagine the fullest Moon you’ve ever seen glowing silver-white in the inky blackness, directly above and before you.

Feel the soft lunar light streaming onto your skin. Sense it touching and mixing with your own energies, commingling and forming new patterns.

See the Goddess in any form that you will. Call to Her, chanting old names if you wish: Diana, Lucina, Selena (pronouncing them as : Dee-AH-nah, Loo-CHEE-nah, Say-LEE-nah). Open your heart and mind to the aspect of Goddess-energy manifested in the Moon’s light.

Repeat this daily for one week, preferably at the same time each night.

Concurrently with this exercise, attune with the God. Upon rising in the morning, no matter how late it is, stand before the Sun (through a window if necessary; outside if possible) and soak in its energies. Thank about the God. Visualize Him as you wish. It might be a mighty warrior rippling with muscles, a spear upraised in one hand, the other cradling a child or a bunch of dew-dripping grapes.

You may want to chant God names, such as Kernunnos, Osiris, Apollo (Care-NOON-nos, Oh-SIGH-rus, Ah-PALL-low) as with the Goddess.

If you don’t wish to visualize the God (for visualization can impose limitations), simply attune to the energies pouring down from the Sun. Even if clouds fill the sky, the God’s energies will reach you. Feel them with all your magical imagination.

Let no thoughts but those of the God disturb your revery. Reach out with your feelings; open your awareness to higher things. Call upon the God in any words. Express your desire to attune with him.

In your quest to know the Gods, take long walks beneath trees. Study flowers and plants. Visit wild, natural places and feel the energies of the Goddess and God directly–through the rush of a stream, the pulse of energy from an old oak’s trunk, the heat of a Sun-warmed rock. Familiarizing yourself with the existence of the Deities come more easily through actual contact with such power sources.

 

Source:

Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner
Scott Cunningham
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Prayer of Offering

Prayer of Offering

By , About.com

 

Offerings

In ancient Rome, it was common to leave a bit of your food on the altar for your household deities. If you would like to do this at your meal, you could use the following prayer:

 

This meal is the work of many hands,
and I offer you a share.
Holy ones, accept my gift,
and upon my hearth, leave your blessings.

 

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Offerings to the Gods

Offerings to the Gods

What’s an Acceptable Gift?

By , About.com

 

In many Pagan and Wiccan traditions, it’s not uncommon to make some sort of offering or sacrifice to the gods. Bear in mind that despite the reciprocal nature of our relationship with the divine, it’s not a matter of “I’m offering you this stuff so you’ll grant my wish.” It’s more along the lines of “I honor you and respect you, so I’m giving you this stuff to show you how much I appreciate your intervention on my behalf.”

So the question arises, then, of what to offer them? Different types of deities seem to respond best to different kinds of offerings. For example, you wouldn’t offer flowers to a war god, would you? When making an offering, it’s important to think about what the god represents. The Roman Cato described an offering for agricultural prosperity: Make offerings to keep your oxen in good health. Make the following sacrifices to Mars… three pounds of wheat, four-and-a-half of lard, four-and-a-half of meat and three pints of wine. While it’s probably not necessary to go that far and offer up enough food to feed a small army to your god, the passage does illustrate the fact that our ancestors thought enough of their gods to take their offerings very seriously.

In general, bread, milk and wine are nearly always appropriate for any deity. Here are some ideas for specific offerings you can make to deities, based upon the types of gods they are:

Hearth and Home Gods:

  • Food: Bread and grains, cooking oil, salt
  • Drink: Milk, wine, cider
  • Herbs: Rosemary, thyme

Gods of Love and Passion:

  • Food: Eggs, honey, apples
  • Drink: Wine, fruit juice
  • Herbs: Lavender, sandalwood

Garden/Nature Deities:

  • Food: Bread, cornmeal, fruit
  • Drink: Milk, water
  • Herbs: Bay

Gods of Prosperity and Abundance:

  • Food: Grains, dairy products like cheese or eggs
  • Drink: Milk, beer
  • Herbs: Mint, pennyroyal, catnip

Ancestor Spirits:

  • Food: Any meal from your family’s table
  • Drink: Drinks from the family table
  • Herbs: Sage, sweetgrass

Childbirth or Fertility Godesss:

  • Food: Eggs, baked sweets like cookies
  • Drink: Milk (including breast milk)
  • Herbs: Rose, sandalwood, apple blossoms
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